Tuesday, October 11, 2011
I have a hard time analyzing Hopkins' writing. On the one hand, she's doing something that not many other authors or poets are doing - YA or otherwise. Stories in verse are unique and she does them well. On the other hand, it's not great poetry. It's gimmicky and cliche at times and not something I think you'd hear a lot of literary praise for. But I don't think Hopkins is going for critical praise as much as she is going for appeal to the audience, which is young adult. So I have to applaud her for taking poetry to a group that doesn't get much exposure to poetry and for doing it in an appealing way. So, while she's not going to be winning any literary awards, I think her writing is extremely successful for her purpose and intent.
Definitely entertaining, if not always believable. If you are a teen in a book by Ellen Hopkins, you are facing some seriously obstacles. It's almost like being an animal in literary fiction - you aren't just going to suffer, you are going to suffer in every imaginable way. That's not necessarily a criticism either - Hopkins' whole "thing" is appealing to teens who are struggling and creating characters they can identify with. And these characters go through the teen experience to an intense degree: rape, homosexuality, religion, sex with teachers, molestation, sibling rivalry, etc, etc, etc. And that's just in this one book. Very soap opera, but on a teen level. Lots of drama, but with heart, if that makes sense.
I'm definitely looking forward to reading Perfect.
Posted by Julie G at 5:23 PM